Nothing brings the drama, the tears, and the emotional rollercoaster like family dynamics. Mix the heart-wrenching high stakes of interpersonal relationships with beautiful prose and character intimacy and you get a story anyone can connect with. A family drama can truly make you experience raw emotions for the ultimate test to tug your heartstrings. If you enjoy family dramas and may need a good cry, here are some books you may enjoy.
The Damage by Caitlin Wahrer
For his whole life, Tony has been looking out for his younger brother, Nick. When Tony is called to the hospital and Nick has been admitted after a violent sexual assault, Tony sees red. Tony’s wife, Julia, is a small town lawyer who feels the case in good hands of police detective Rice. Now, Nick’s attacker is out on bail and claiming Nick is lying about everything causing Julia to want to help and Tony to want to get revenge.
Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
The Lee’s are a Chinese-American family living in a small town in Ohio during the 1970s. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James, who believe that Lydia can achieve anything and everything. When Lydia is found dead in a lake, the family is destroyed and forced to live a new life without Lydia.
The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett
The Vignes sisters ran away from a small Southern Black community at the age of 16. One twin left to live her life secretly passing as a White woman while the other twin lived her life as a Black woman. Their two lives couldn’t be more different, but the hundreds of miles can’t separate them when their own daughters’ lives begin to intersect.
Rabbit Hole by Kate Brody
Ten years ago, Teddy Angstrom’s sister, Angie, disappeared and the police never found out what happened to her. Now, Teddy’s father, Mark, has just committed suicide. When Teddy finds that Mark had been active in the Reddit community of amateur sleuths that were trying to solve Angie’s case, Teddy picks up the pieces Mark left behind in hopes she can find out what really happened to Angie.
An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
In their first year of marriage, Celestial and Roy are a young Black couple that look like they have a bright future ahead of themselves. When Roy is arrested for a rape he didn’t commit and sentenced to 12 years in prison, Celestial is devastated and seeks comfort in her childhood friend and the best man at their wedding, Andre. After five years of his sentence, Roy is released from prison only to surprise Celestial with his return home.
Pachinko by Min Jin Lee
In the early 1900s, Sunja is a teenager who falls for a wealthy man at the seashore near her home in Korea. When she discovers that he is married and she is pregnant, Sunja then accepts an offer of marriage from a sickly and gentle minister on his way to Japan. Not only will Sunja’s decision change her life completely, but other generations to come.
The Paper Palace by Miranda Cowley Heller
Elle and her husband and three children are spending the summer at the Paper Palace – the family vacation house that Elle has spent every summer of her life at. This is the summer that could change everything. Last night, Elle and her oldest friend, Jonas, slept together and now Elle finds herself in a position where she hast to make a choice. Does she choose her husband, Peter, and the life she’s accustomed to or does she choose Jonas and the life she always imagined if it hadn’t been for a tragic event that changed everything?
A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara
Some novels may not be about blood relatives but your found and/or chosen family. A Little Life follows four college classmates who travel into adulthood together. As the four friends move to New York in hopes of bright futures, the glue to their friendship lies in the enigmatic Jude, who is haunted and physically scarred from childhood trauma.